Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Review - Death Becomes It

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Review - Death Becomes It

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls expansion adds a lot to the game, but it actually changes very little.

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I enjoyed the review, it looked well thought out and pretty thorough. I didn't enjoy Diablo III, after a while. I don't think I'll get the expansion. But, hopefully, those who do get it will enjoy it.

I haven't picked up the exp yet, but I did pick D3 back up after the Loot 2.0 patch - the patch alone makes the game totally worth revisiting.

As someone who purchased Diablo 3 (The original) at launch back in 2012, I admit I was very disappointed with the overall experience. The Auction House, the Online Play, the short campaign, and the cruddy loot system made it much more of a chore than a game. So quickly after defeating the campaign on Nightmare Mode, I just gave it up and never looked back.

Now comes Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls. Was I looking forward to this game? No. Did I anticipate this game? No. Heck I honestly just went to the store on March 25th and saw it on the shelf and felt "Already?". The in-store box was horrible, as it didn't really advertise any of the new features. Heck, not even Blizzard's only ads advertised the new features very well. I had to search across the internet and read information from other players who played Beta just to get a gist of what was -really- added.

Eventually I came across a couple of things which sounded interesting to me.

1. The Mystic NPC
2. Adventure Mode.

People said the campaign was short and lack-luster, and they were right. Honestly Blizzard really squandered and wasted the potential of this story just as bad they did Diablo 3. You will not be very impressed with Act V or the final battle, it's very anti-climatic compared to all of its huge build up they were giving it throughout the whole act.

BUT!

I felt my purchase of Reaper of Souls WAS justified, and the steep price tag was pretty well worth it. Why? Because of the Mystic and Adventure Modes. Post Level 61+ Content is a RADICAL step up from anything Pre-60. They throw in an lots and lots of new depth to the collection and customization of loot, they also expand the possibilities to make a single piece of "Almost but not quite" Equipment into your next pet project -- giving you the means and the goals to turn that piece of gear into the "Perfect Piece" of Equipment you wanted in the first place via the Enchanting & Transmoging of items.

The best part is that once you finish the Reaper Campaign, you can just hop right into Adventure Mode and never look back. Finally freeing you from the mundane mill of story progression that made Diablo 3 so dull in the first place.

Finally, the new gear designs available via Transmog open up a whole new door as well. You'll feel proud of your character, and feel that you are indeed the powerhouse that everyone seems to claim you are.

Also, original Diablo 3 owners get in-game Angel Wings.

---

Final Thoughts: While I was very wary of buying the expansion because Blizzard can't seem to describe what's new well enough. I eventually read enough about it online to feel my purchase was justified, and I was correct in that assumption. Mystic and Adventure Modes really sell this game and finally give it those lasting appeals that were truly missing from the release. $39.99 is steep, but it's worth it for what they did add into the game, but just remember you're not paying for the short and lack-luster Act V.

Verdict: 4 our of 5 stars. If you liked Diablo 3 but felt it needed more and hated the Auction House. Give this game a go. Auction Houe is gone, loot is awesome, and the game is finally FUN. What more do you need to know?

TemperHoof:

Also, original Diablo 3 owners get in-game Angel Wings.

Those wings are available for anyone that pre-ordered the game digitally or registered the physical copy within the first week.

I decided to give Diablo 3 another chance with the expansion pack. Honestly I have to say I'm kind of disappointed. To be honest Blizzard of all people should be able to do a better storyline even if the major focus is of course on the loot. What's more the world is so fairly small and linear that it raises the question as to what exactly I'm building up that epic loot for, especially nowadays. What keeps the loot grind going in something like "World Of Warcraft" is that there is always a bigger monster or a deeper, more difficult, dungeon. Mostly in "Diablo 3" the best you can do is fight all the same stuff you already beat, but increase it's life bars/damage output in proportion to yours and maybe give out a few extra random powers (some of which can be quite cheap) depending on difficulty.

To be fair "Diablo 3" retreads the same basic ground as "Diablo" and "Diablo 3" but it needs to both be longer, and look towards other games in the same genera and how they advanced the formula. "Sacred and Sacred 2" for example have a huge, open, world to explore along with it's basic (and fairly weak) quests. Even games like "Din's Curse" manage to deal with the problem by having procedurally generated content so it at least feels somewhat like your going to new places for a while, as opposed to literally running back and forth across the same exact map.

To me it seemed like "Diablo 3" was a poorly conceived cash grab, and it was all about the real money auction house. Probably due to some guys at EA/Blizzard looking at articles on various websites dealing with people being willing to pay thousands of dollars for a piece of loot and thinking "wow, it would be nice to get a piece of these transactions". Of course this was a terrible idea, and it died out, but with it sort of went the point of "Diablo 3" and it kind of just became a simplified re-tread of exactly what they did before. For $40 I don't think "Reaper Of Souls" really added that much content, the new act is pretty short, there is only one new character type, and Adventure Mode by and large just uses the same assets from the campaign... "Adventure Mode" could skeptically be called "optimized grinding mode".

Truthfully I'm kind of looking forward to "Sacred 3" and I'll probably be passing on a hypothetical "Diablo IV" unless they vastly improve things. Blizzard needs to be adding more depth, not increasing simplicity. What's more it can't neglect it's writing, one of the reasons why I'm a "StarCraft" fan is because their writing actually made it's campaign modes kind of cool and worth the price of admission, even to someone like me who doesn't much care for RTS multiplayer. As Purdy as some of the cinematics are, the story is kind of laughable, and despite throwing the term "Nephalim" around a bunch, it doesn't do a good job of selling me on a hero's journey where in the space of a few hours I go from whacking weak little skeletons, to literally throwing the world's equivalent of the Devil down from the highest point of the high heavens when the angels couldn't. With good writing it could be sold (and be made epic), but honestly as I was playing a monk it actually seemed fairly silly since I was pretty much using the same basic sequences of martial arts attacks to drop everything from Imps to the God Of Death after he absorbed the Devil's power. I didn't really feel the growth to explain why even a "Nephalim" (who as a race were more or less exterminated) could do this, I pretty much felt like my character was a girl who took a few kung-fu lessons on a mountain, and then started judo chopping metaphysical beings to death. I mean heck we didn't even get a training montage, and something as weak as "Dragonball Z" logic to explain the elevating power levels. Mostly all I got was some fallen angel dressed like an armored hobo with a glowing sword pointing in the vague general direction of the next thing my character needed to punch in the face as she worked her way up the food chain. For whatever reason I expect more from Blizzard. :)

I play Diablo for the story :-(

It sounds like this is just more of the same, which I'm okay with. I had fun playing Diablo III with my friend. I do wish it was more randomized like the first game was and the story is certainly the weakest out of the trilogy, but it was still fun. Sadly, I have to wait until the PS4 version comes out before I get to play the expansion.

I had a lot of fun with Heart of the Swarm but I'm not going to pay the same price for ROS. It doesn't feel justified to me, especially since the adventure mode is not really my cup of tea.

Adventure mode is actually quite fun, if only because its just a non stop slug fest for the most part. You kill a bounty, immediately go to the next bounty, then continue on. Toss in boss fights and things get pretty cool.

Rift can get really hectic too. Its not quite as random as I thought, each level has a specific set of mobs pulled from every act, but its usually a maximum of 5 mob types in each level, but you can get some really nasty combinations of mobs.

The best part about adventure mode though is that, and maybe I'm just makin this up but it feels right, mob density gets jacked to eleven in adventure mode as compared to story mode. One of the things I missed with the 2.0 patch was that they lowered mob density in story mode for reasons. In adventure mode the gigantic packs of mobs made a glorious return.

All in all I'd say it was worth my 60 bucks (digital deluxe edition cause I'm a huge sucker for WoW pets and Starcraft 2 portraits).

shintakie10:
Adventure mode is actually quite fun, if only because its just a non stop slug fest for the most part. You kill a bounty, immediately go to the next bounty, then continue on. Toss in boss fights and things get pretty cool.

Rift can get really hectic too. Its not quite as random as I thought, each level has a specific set of mobs pulled from every act, but its usually a maximum of 5 mob types in each level, but you can get some really nasty combinations of mobs.

The best part about adventure mode though is that, and maybe I'm just makin this up but it feels right, mob density gets jacked to eleven in adventure mode as compared to story mode. One of the things I missed with the 2.0 patch was that they lowered mob density in story mode for reasons. In adventure mode the gigantic packs of mobs made a glorious return.

All in all I'd say it was worth my 60 bucks (digital deluxe edition cause I'm a huge sucker for WoW pets and Starcraft 2 portraits).

The rifts in adventure mode are limited in enemy type per level of the rift, yes...

... But those enemy types can be treasure goblins.

TREASURE GOBLINS.

OT:
Yeah, I've been playing since release and can confirm the launch was, literally, seamless. You were in a game. You went to act 4 at 8:55. You killed Diablo at 9:01 and it was all "So, totally going to go after Malthael now, right babe?" "Oh D3... You're totally dreamy." "I know girl, Ai know."

So far so good, though. Not sure if there's longevity to it, but it's good fun. If Ladders get introduced it could only get better, although I have to laugh a bit at people who spent silly amounts of money on gold right before the AH shut down went into effect, since, you know, Ladders make it pretty much meaningless.

Nice review.

I think, basically, the 2.0 patch and expansion made Diablo 3 just like Diablo 2. Because of that, I think that a lot of people who don't like grindfest dungeon crawlers will still hate Diablo and say that the expansion has changed nothing, but for people who avidly play the genre (Or even just Diablo, for that matter), they re-did a whole lot of stuff and brought back the wonderful feel of Diablo 2 to the game. If you liked Diablo 2, get RoS.

Thanks for the kind words on the review, folks.

Basically, if you liked Diablo 3, Reaper of Souls should appeal to you. It runs great, it hits the action-RPG grindfest note just about right, and it's fun. It's almost someone at Blizzard said, "You know we don't HAVE to make this just like Diablo 2, but we can make it fun in its own right."

That said, if you don't dig the grind, you might be better off waiting.

Absolutely no interest in this franchise anymore.

Besides, why waste time with a sub par game when Dark Souls II is right in front of me?

No offline mode still? No sale for me. It's just not worth the frustration.

for Ps3, i would need to get the Regular version+ the Expansion , or is the Expansion + original all now on the same Disk?

VoidOfOne:
I enjoyed the review, it looked well thought out and pretty thorough. I didn't enjoy Diablo III, after a while. I don't think I'll get the expansion. But, hopefully, those who do get it will enjoy it.

if i were you, play the game again with 2.0 being released. a lot of the gameplay changes can be seen there, and are pretty fun regardless of buying the exp. i really didn't care for vanilla, but 2.0 was really fun and was what inclined me to buy it.

TheEvilCheese:
No offline mode still? No sale for me. It's just not worth the frustration.

apart from server maintenance (a couple of hours once a week), it's never gone down for me. unless your internet connection is unstable there shouldn't be a problem (of course if there is, totally justified in not getting it, i wouldn't in that situation)

Pigeon_Grenade:
for Ps3, i would need to get the Regular version+ the Expansion , or is the Expansion + original all now on the same Disk?

there isn't a PS3 version yet. they've said they plan on porting it to consoles at a later date, but the PS3 shipped with a better loot system anyway, which was one of the big changes they made to the PC version.

This review brings up basically every reason I tapped out of the original fairly quickly. Especially the writing. I don't know what happened to Blizzard. Their characters used to be so much more interesting. Now they are just there simply to advance the story. This feels particularly criminal in Starcraft 2. Such a shame.

Ferisar:

shintakie10:
Adventure mode is actually quite fun, if only because its just a non stop slug fest for the most part. You kill a bounty, immediately go to the next bounty, then continue on. Toss in boss fights and things get pretty cool.

Rift can get really hectic too. Its not quite as random as I thought, each level has a specific set of mobs pulled from every act, but its usually a maximum of 5 mob types in each level, but you can get some really nasty combinations of mobs.

The best part about adventure mode though is that, and maybe I'm just makin this up but it feels right, mob density gets jacked to eleven in adventure mode as compared to story mode. One of the things I missed with the 2.0 patch was that they lowered mob density in story mode for reasons. In adventure mode the gigantic packs of mobs made a glorious return.

All in all I'd say it was worth my 60 bucks (digital deluxe edition cause I'm a huge sucker for WoW pets and Starcraft 2 portraits).

The rifts in adventure mode are limited in enemy type per level of the rift, yes...

... But those enemy types can be treasure goblins.

TREASURE GOBLINS.

OT:
Yeah, I've been playing since release and can confirm the launch was, literally, seamless. You were in a game. You went to act 4 at 8:55. You killed Diablo at 9:01 and it was all "So, totally going to go after Malthael now, right babe?" "Oh D3... You're totally dreamy." "I know girl, Ai know."

So far so good, though. Not sure if there's longevity to it, but it's good fun. If Ladders get introduced it could only get better, although I have to laugh a bit at people who spent silly amounts of money on gold right before the AH shut down went into effect, since, you know, Ladders make it pretty much meaningless.

Havent had a level full of nothing but treasure goblins yet. I did, however, have a rift guardian that was a gigantic treasure goblin. I could not stop spazzing about how awesome that was.

ffronw:

I won't spoil the story here, but suffice to say that you'll have no doubts about how Malthael feels about death by the time you're through. Much like all the evil lords of hell in the core game, he can't help but pop up every now and then to remind you that he's evil, and you're doomed. It gets rather tiresome.

Damn it....

Sigh, oh well. At least we got this.

I... I like the story in D3. It's not award winning or anything but IMO compared to most ARPGs it's much more coherent and interesting.

As for Ros, I'm enjoying it. The loot 2.0 patch was more significant than the expansion itself, but adventure mode and act V are fun. The only thing to disappoint me so far is the crusader. I'm at lvl 30 and right now it feels like the most effective strategy is to pull as many mobs as you can, nuke them with hard hitting long CD skills and then do nothing until you can do that again. It doesn't help that certain elements make the class overall feel like the bastard child of the monk and the barbarian. Laws for example are basically just a worse version of mantras.

TaboriHK:
This review brings up basically every reason I tapped out of the original fairly quickly. Especially the writing. I don't know what happened to Blizzard. Their characters used to be so much more interesting. Now they are just there simply to advance the story. This feels particularly criminal in Starcraft 2. Such a shame.

The characters in Starcraft and Warcraft were always the strongest, and I'd argue with you that Starcraft still has good characters. But Diablo's main characters, as with most RPG characters, were always just weak, blank slates. Deckard and Tyrael had at least some semblance of a personality, but for the most part were just there to explain shit to you.

irishda:

TaboriHK:
This review brings up basically every reason I tapped out of the original fairly quickly. Especially the writing. I don't know what happened to Blizzard. Their characters used to be so much more interesting. Now they are just there simply to advance the story. This feels particularly criminal in Starcraft 2. Such a shame.

The characters in Starcraft and Warcraft were always the strongest, and I'd argue with you that Starcraft still has good characters. But Diablo's main characters, as with most RPG characters, were always just weak, blank slates. Deckard and Tyrael had at least some semblance of a personality, but for the most part were just there to explain shit to you.

I find myself severely disappointed in Starcraft 2's take on basically every character. It's just simpler and lesser in every way.

I'll definitely agree that Diablo's strong point was never characters. That being said, I think the "so simple a 3 year old could follow it" narrative of D3 is too simple even for this franchise. Diablo to me has always been a series that had a couple of interesting ideas but let them take a backseat to the action, but D3 has no ideas. You can feel the game throwing up its hands and going, "okay, you're gonna fight the X in X now. Also, angels. I dunno, whatever."

Good review: but i think a major point (possibly THE major point) was not addressed - the revamping of the original 5 classes, complete with a new ability.

Previously, only a single build was even close to viable in the higher levels of monster power (for example, CM wizard). Now, players can experiment with all of their classes skills and ability, and find dozens of perfectly viable combinations.

This is what really adds to the replay-ability of the game. When you start to get bored, you can completely change your build up on a while and come up with something that will still be viable.

Also... the always-online comment... really? Come on man...

*IF* I ever decide to buy a PS4, then I'll probably get it for that. Not right away, of course, because I don't think Diablo III is going to be worth spending $600 just to play.

I'm still never going to buy a single player game if I need to be always online. So PC will be forever "lolnope".

Hm. Paying 40 bucks for 2 major selling points which should've been in the original version and 1-2 hour new content. Oh jeah, and 1 skill + 3 passives per class.
Jeah nope. They messed up with D3 and so many people were in rage and so many forums were aflame. And yet the sheep run back to the flock throw 40 bucks at Blizz anyway.

And people wonder why the gaming industry is in it's current state. All out of all my friends many of whom said they were horribly disappointed by D3 as long time D1+D2 players bought the expansion the day it released even though they haven't played in over a year.
I mean if you've such customers i'd screw them over too - they'll come back in the end anyway.

Sniper Team 4:
I play Diablo for the story :-(

It sounds like this is just more of the same, which I'm okay with. I had fun playing Diablo III with my friend. I do wish it was more randomized like the first game was and the story is certainly the weakest out of the trilogy, but it was still fun. Sadly, I have to wait until the PS4 version comes out before I get to play the expansion.

If you play it for the story, I gotta say its not as bad as the train-wreck that was Diablo III, but not being absolutely terrible is not the best of accolades. Do not get your hopes up for the RoS story, as you WILL be disappointed.

The rest of the game though has taken a turn to the better. While there is still a ways to go, its a DEFINATE improvement. The expansion is too expensive though for its content.

"Everything is pretty disappointing. 4 out of 5 stars!"

Anyways, the removal of the AH puts us almost back at square one in terms of not fucking up the game like idiots. Still have to play online for no good reason, though, so I guess Blizzard is adamant about leaving their heads at least halfway up their asses.

Can't wait for the PS4 version. 1080p, 60fps, all of RoS plus bonus content, offline play, and controller input (which I find to be roughly 10x more engaging/fun).

I think the shit story is a pretty grave disappointment, honestly. In a genre where no one cares about story, you could actually take some real chances with the narrative and always rest easy in the knowledge that anyone who might be confused or "put off" can simply skip straight to the mindless slaughter. Why not tell a batshit crazy story we haven't seen a thousand times before when there's practically no downside to speak of?

My Problem is: I liked D3 after the loot 2.0 Patch. Played a bunch with friends, leveled up new characters and geared them up. And the I just stopped playing after two weeks, and now I feel absolutely no draw back in. If you make as much as a single step backwards from the game and look at what you are actually doing, you can't help but feel the utter nonsense that is getting loot to get loot to get loot...

It's odd because I never had that feeling with Diablo 2. Perhaps that was because you'd also get skill points. It seems a loot grinder stripped of any other feature just doesn't work for me.

 

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